Ion Channels: Their Discovery, their Function and their Role in Diseases

View Ion Channels: Their Discovery, their Function and their Role in Diseases Ion channels

Presenter: Erwin Neher

Published: July 2015

Age: 18-22 and upwards

Views: 687 views

Tags: bioelectricity;ion;channels;membranes;

Type: Lectures

Source/institution: Lindau-Nobel

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The concept of bioelectricity emerged in the late 18th century, based on the experiments of Galvani and Volta. Sixty years ago, Hodgkin and Huxley showed that the nerve impulse is a result of permeability changes of the nerve membrane. This raised the question as to what the molecular mechanisms of such permeability changes might be. In 1976, Bert Sakmann and I were able to show that so-called ion channels – proteins, which gate ion fluxes across membranes – mediate these responses. Research over the last 30 years has shown that ion channels are present in basically all cell types of our body, mediating a variety of physiological functions; that they are prime drug targets; and that dysfunctional ion channels cause a variety of diseases.

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